Celeb Edition with Goitseone Phoko

Sharon Mathala

This year, the nation’s number one, Goitseone Phoko celebrates a decade between the posts at Gaborone United (GU). The 27-year-old goalkeeper, known as Chichima on the football pitch, is famous for spectacular, high-flying saves and has played a pivotal part in GU’s success this season.

How did you spend your holidays?
I did not really do much over the holidays as it is still no yet safe to travel because of the pandemic. I spent my time with family and going to the farm.

Who, in your view, is the best footballer in the world?
Definitely CR7, Christiano Ronaldo, the Manchester United front man. There is no two ways about it!

Back to the mother continent, who were you supporting at AFCON?
Senegal. And I am not saying that because they won, I supported them right from the beginning. Their team was solid.

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Where does the ‘Chichima’ nickname come from?
From my playing days as a kid; my father’s friend used to say I reminded him of a certain player called Chichima. I asked him who that was but he never gave me a straight answer. Even though I never found out who he was, the nickname has stuck ever since!

Have you ever been in trouble with the law?
No ! (laughs) I have never been on the wrong side with the law enforcement, lucky enough, and I don’t ever want to be.

We all know footballers are popular with the ladies, have you ever been caught cheating?
No, never. I have never been caught, never! And I am not just saying this because it will be public, I think my girlfriend can attest to it as well. But now that you ask, I wonder what I would do should it happen that I get caught!

What do you get up to in your spare time?
Well because football takes much of my time, the little time I get away from the pitch I make sure I spend it with family. I believe in family values because that is how we were groomed when growing up, so yeah, during off season I am with family.

When was the time you cried and why?
When my cousin was awfully sick. It was really bad and I was really pained.

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What is the most expensive item of clothing you own?
I have Gucci, real Gucci. And clothes from Fabiano.

You have conceded the least number of goals in the league this season, letting in just eight in 17 games. What’s your secret?
I think my work rate has increased but it is also because of team work. We are much determined this season. I overwork myself during training. We analyse every game and work on our mistakes and hence the improvement this year. And I hope we can continue with the good work!

Five things people don’t know about you?
1. I am very shy
2. I am very reserved
3. I like spending time alone and recollecting my thoughts
4. I am a good listener
5. I accommodate everyone regardless of social status

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